Darcy, defender of the poor
THE HUMANITARIAN extraordinaire who was Darcy Goodwin was so dedicated to the Northern Rivers community he was out volunteering the day before he died.
Mr Goodwin was well known around the region as the driving force behind the multi-award winning Five Loaves Mobile Soup Kitchen.
He died of natural causes on Monday night.
Minutes after news of the 82-year-old's death broke on Facebook yesterday; tributes flowed for the man who dedicated 24 years of his life to helping others.
Mr Goodwin had helped out thousands of people on the Northern Rivers, from handing out food to helping them find accommodation and delivering furniture.
Before he came to Lismore, Mr Goodwin lived in Grafton with his parents and spent some time working with his father in the timber industry.
He moved to Lismore, bought a house at Goonellabah and joined up with the small Lismore Seventh Day Adventist Church.
When the church developed plans to build its current chapel on Uralba St, Mr Goodwin sold his home and poured the money into the construction of the church.
From then on he and his wife Marjorie lived in a caravan, most recently at South Lismore's Roadrunner Caravan Park.
On Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays Mr Goodwin would feed Lismore locals. He would also visit Southern Cross University on Tuesday afternoons, Casino on Wednesdays and Fridays and Nimbin on Saturdays.
Every first and third Sunday of the month, Mr Goodwin could be found working at the Lismore Car Boot Markets until noon.
Mr Goodwin received many donations of food and money from many individuals, community organisations and businesses and always poured all of what was donated back into the Five Loaves Mobile Soup Kitchen.
Mr Goodwin received four major awards for his dedicated community service, including the 1998 Australia Day award for community services, the 2001 Australia Day award for Citizen of the Year and a Centenary Award in 2003.
In 2008, Mr Goodwin's service to the local community was applauded by the Supreme Master Ching Hai International Association, a humanitarian organisation based in the United States.
Mr Goodwin received a certificate, a personally-signed letter and a $2000 cheque from the Supreme Master Ching Hai.
In her letter to Mr Goodwin, Master Hai wrote "for your warm hearted love and concern for the needy, for your empathetic and gracious commitment to the care of others … we hereby applaud and celebrate the compassionate deeds of Mr Darcy Goodwin, humanitarian extraordinaire".
A huge turnout is expected at Mr Goodwin's funeral this Friday at 11am in the church he helped fund and build - the Lismore Seventh Day Adventist Church in Uralba Street.
Feel free to leave tributes in the comments section below.